tv American Perspectives CSPAN July 9, 2011 8:00pm-11:00pm EDT
thank you, and good luck. god bless you. [cheers and applause] >> next, arthur thomas friedman on the american dream, then the foreign policies of richard nixon. next, a discussion of domestic policy and global issues with new york times columnist thomas friedman. he is interviewed by walter isaacson, head of the aspen institute. they talk about politics, america's place in the world, and the future of the american dream. this is an hour and 10 minutes. >> thank you all very much for being here.
as you can the by the incredible overflow crowd, there is nobody in aspen who less need an introduction and tom friedman. somebody once said that of henry kissinger, and he said there may be no one who needs less of an introduction, but there is also nobody who more enjoys one. [laughter] so i will say a couple of nice words about tom, unnecessary though they might be. ever since she went from beirut to jerusalem decades ago, you have been the clearest thinker about where our country is going and where our world is going. he speaks with common sense. you may know hell rare reported common sense is, so that is why all of us think of tom as a
national -- how rare reported common sense is, so we think of tom as a national treasure. >> walter, thank you. first of all, it is great to be here and wonderful to be here and it is a -- amazing what you have built here. thank you all for coming out at this early hour. i have a book coming out in september, written with a friend of mine. michael is a foreign policy professor at johns hopkins. what are to foreign policy guys doing writing about america? the book came about by accident. michael and i had been conversations about foreign policy, as my wife will attest, probably every other day for the last 20 years. we noted that over the last few years, we would start out talking about the world and in- depth talking about america.
we eventually came to the conclusion that america is held, vitality, and bigger. the book we have written is called "that used to be us." >> when does it come out? >> it comes out september 5. the title was given to us by barack obama. you may or may not recall that the day after he lost the midterms, he held a press conference in which he noted china is building high-speed rail. they came out with the world's fastest supercomputer, and that used to be us. i made that the title of the book. >> if you see something, say something. >> that is the first chapter of the book. it's a rip-off of the homeland security motto. our point is that the biggest homeland security issue right now is the health, vitality, and
vigor of our country. the american dream is now in play. the future prospects and possibility of the american dream is now in play. what people do not really appreciate fully is how important the american dream is, not only for the stability of our own country. the notion that each generation will be able to do better than the previous generation has been such a bedrock engine for pulling in holding together this incredible mix of cultures, identities, and immigrants. what people do not fully appreciate is how important that american dream is for the stability of the world. the united states provides a huge amount of global governance, whether it is patrolling the sealanes in asia
or insisting on the right rules of global economic treaties. we provide a huge amount of global government. i am not ashamed to say i think we are the tent pole that holds up the world. if that tent pole buckles, your kids will not just grow up in a different america. they will grow up in a different world. >> doesn't some of that come with ignoring our history and not knowing where we come from? >> that is a good question. the way we diagnose where we are right now is with this sort of framework. i believe that -- the book begins, just to get to that question, and what really sparked us to write the book -- i was at the world economic forum in shenzhen china, which is three hours out of beijing. the conference was held in a convention center that if we
were in washington d.c., it would be a tourist site. my friend or will it is here and we were at the conference together. i came home from that meeting -- when you go to the website about the conference, it says that this conference hall, construction began in september of 2009 and was completed in may of 2010. i was walking around my room saying september, october, november, december. that is eight months. i got home and i called michael and was telling him about my trip. his wife got on the phone and ask if i had been to the bethesda metro lately. i knew what she meant. they had been repairing the to escalators in the bethesda metro for six months. this is not a joke. they had been repairing them for
six months. i went down and interview the people repairing it, and there are exactly 21 steps in the bethesda metro. that contrast is just so overpowering. then i started researching about the bethesda metro, and there's a great letter to the editor that described the sound of the escalators as eight dying tyrannosaur as >>. one letter to the editor really struck me. it was someone complaining because when the escalators are shut, when they shot one, then they freeze the other and it becomes a two-way staircase. it becomes a huge traffic jam to get off the metro. this one letter to the editor ended, "but we are sort of getting used ticket." -- "sort of getting used to it."
people just have to put down their political nonsense and say this is code red, we have to do something about it. all the answers are actually in america. the point we tried to make is that china, today, is getting 90% of what i consider to be a vastly inferior system. we are only getting 50% out of what i consider to be a vastly superior political system. >> let me stop, politically superior political system. our system is superior? explain that. >> if you think about the world we are going into -- let me back
up and make one point. i think we face four great challenges today as the country. the first is adapting to the i t revolution. the second is globalization. they are one challenge and fundamentally an education challenge. the second challenge is what i call -- also all the entitlement debt and deficit issues, and the last is energy and climate. those are the four great challenges we face today. what of those challenges have in common is that they have reached a point of criticality. the only way to address them is with collective action. you cannot address those problems without the deficit and entitlement requires a sense and
action.simpson-bowlees what we have lost right now is the ability to act collectively. i would say the broad framework is, i think where we are today is that we have made two fundamental errors. first of all, we made the most dangerous mistake a country can make. we misread our environment at the end of the cold war. we interpreted the end of the cold war as a great victory, when in fact, it was the onset of the biggest challenge our country has ever faced. we just created a 2 billion people just like us, all with the aspiration to have the american dream, only with a huge pent-up aspiration.
they are like a champagne bottle that has been shaken for 50 years and the court just came out. just one we thought we could put our feet up, we needed to be tying our shoes and redoubling our efforts. then we compounded that mistake in the second decade after the cold war by deciding we would devote the whole decade to chasing the losers from globalization, al qaeda. that is the framework of what has been going on. in answer to your question about the american system, to make, -- to me, they teach fighter pilots that if you are faster than the other guy, you will blow him out of the sky. i would argue that in this sense of complacency at the end of the
cold war, we got really slow. i interviewed an economist in singapore and he said in singapore, we live in a thatched hut with no doors and windows. we feel every change of temperature, every breeze. you americans are living in a brick house with central heating. you feel nothing. why is that important? you go to the debate we are having now, and the republicans say i see your 10 trillion dollars and i raise huge $3 billion. >> excuse me, what world are we living in? what are the big trends in the world? where do we need to cut, invest, say, and inspire? if you cut without a plan, you
can hit a big artery. you can blow up a huge artery. that is the scariest thing going on right now. we are having a debate about cutting without any plan of where we are going. the point we try to make in the book is, i am not a green eyeshade guy. i am about july 4, not april 15. july 4 is now at stake. i am after preserving american greatness, and that is not the discussion we are having. >> so we enter the dead and deficit crisis eight or nine months ago. the president appointed a commission that astonishingly was courageous and did what they asked him, the commission that dimension. it gave a pretty good blueprint which it could have built upon.
what kept our system from just embracing that and moving with it? >> oh would say two things are standing in the way. i think we have suffered a real values decline in this country in passing from the greatest generation to the baby boom generation. we went from a generation that lived and believed in what my friend taught me, living by what i would call sustainable by use. whatever you do, you do it in a way that will sustain. and contrast with that the new boundaries that prevail in our country, situational values. if the situation allows me to give you $8 million mortgage and you are only making $15,000 a year, no problem.
neither of us will be here holding the bag. i think we have moved us a country from a generation that practice sustainable values to one practicing situational values. the second is what happened to our politics. michele bachmann is a paradigm of what has happened to our political system. you have a lot of political senators and congressmen who come here, and individually they are rational people. why did they behave so it rationally when they are together in one room? the only answer is, life is about incentives. the only way you can explain why they did not take up simpson- bowles is because the incentives are all wrong.
move the cheese, move the mouse. these people must be responding to a cheese that -- let's talk about what is that she's. there is a whole set of political changes that account for that. first has been the purging of liberal, rockefeller republicans from the republican party, and the purging of southern conservatives from the democratic party. when it their work rockefeller republicans in the republican party and southern conservatives in the democratic party, but party spent a huge amount time negotiating with themselves before they negotiated with the others. we have completely lost all of this. that is reinforced by gerrymandering. then you have a whole campaign finance laws and special --
special interest to overlay on that. the bigger government gets, the more is at stake with special interests. and finally have the media. jon stewart made this point. he said 24-hour cable was invented for o.j. simpson. it was invented for the o.j. trial. o.j. does not kill somebody every day, thank goodness. the problem is, these people have to fill those 24 hours even when o.j. has not murdered somebody. so what they do is fill it with michele bachmann. i have a particular grievance with her. i was speaking at the university of indiana. this is a real story. six months ago, i was talking to their honor society. i go back to the hotel room and i turned on the t b.
anderson cooper is doing a story where he is explaining he has to rebut and correct a story he had on the night before. congresswoman michele bachmann was on the night before and said that president obama's trip to india was going to cost $2 billion. and he had let it go. he did a wonderful thing, anderson cooper. he'd be constructed the whole story, showed how it began with an unnamed indian official. as if an unnamed indian official would have any idea what the president's trip was going to cost and involved 32 naval ships. this thing was crazy. so he did constructed the whole story. i thought it was so good, i got a transcript and i wrote a column on it, giving him a shout
out for doing it. the next day i was giving a talk to the honor society. the first thing a young man said at the table is, did you know obama's trip was going to cost a billion dollars? and i said, did not see anderson cooper? i tell this whole story in the book. and michele bachmann just announced for the presidency. that is utterly irresponsible. >> let me talk about the role of new media. in that case, for example, you can argue that it was because of the internet that spread that story, but even before anderson cooper, there were self correcting mechanisms on the internet. do you think the internet is increasing polarization or at some point it will give us
enough information that we are better off? >> it is everything and its opposite. the internet took that story and spread it all over the world. and then they all had a field day with it. if you actually eat the constructed the story, and i do not remember the website, but there is a website that within hours got to the bottom of the whole story. if someone can ferret out the backs -- the problem is the complete asymmetry between the people spreading blight and the people ferreting out the facts and giving them to people. the correct facts were there, but you would have to know where to go to find it. let me pick up on that and go back to your question about what kind of america are system has,
etc. it gets back to the question of what world we are in. the education question is a subtext of the subject here. the first chapter is taken from the movie "up in the air." the guy whose job is firing people face-to-face loses his job to someone who wants to bar them over the internet. -- who wants to fire them over the internet. that is all about what has happened since you hosted the four or five years ago to talk about a book called "the world is flat." i wrote that book in 2005. if you open the book up today and look in the index, facebook is not in it.
twitter was a sound, applications were what you sent to college, and skype for most people was a typo. that is what has happened since i wrote that book, and i thought i was on the cutting edge. now i will take you to the arab spring, because this is related. basically, when i "wrote the world as black," -- when i rod flat.""the world as blatt,is to put it in terms of the arab
spring, we went from connecting detroit and damascus to connecting them to a dusty, syrian border town where the revolt began. they have been feeding so much information just through cellphone cameras. every night you can watch footage coming from there, and it is all labeled snn, which stands for "sham news network'." the world has gone from connected to hyper connected. we have gone from connected to interconnected.
we have gotten so much more. it has taken skills and bloated (corrects to what extent do you think information technology was the cause of arab spring? >> i think it was a facilitator. just as the early telephone was because of a revolution in 1989. whatever the technology is, people use it, and is always a facilitator. at the end of the day, think about syria and how different was an incredible opportunity to be in tahrir square when that revolution happened. the egyptians knew their army was not going to shoot at them.
the syrians, every time they walk out the door, they know the army is going to shoot at them and kill them. but you are a damascus correspondent for a while. >> my general view is this. every single one of these arab leaders is dead man walking. how or when they go, i cannot tell you, but i will tell you why i say that. what i saw an tahrir square, which was something more than a democracy. it was about three things. this is over and above everything, it was about dignity. it was about people living in a hyper connected world who could see how well china is doing, how well india is doing, and how far behind and had fallen. the number of egyptians in tahrir square who said to meet,
i was ashamed to show my egyptian passport. imagine being ashamed to show your american passport. second, it was about justice. these people live in the unjust society. that is why the first thing they did was burned down the party headquarters and the police stations. the last thing it was about was freedom. it was not just freedom in the governmental sense, but to run my life, think my thoughts, and collaborate with whoever i want. take all of those three and put them together with one more thing. people forget about the kids who lost their lives when the regime came back. 800 more egyptians that have died in the egyptian army since 1973. one thing that was striking when you went around the square, because i got there the week after that, is that there were small pictures everywhere of the
people who died. then there were walls sized pictures of the people who died. they are all labeled in arabic "martyr." martyrs for democracy, i have never seen that before. what happens in egypt does not stay in egypt. then you have a movement, because every walking, living, breathing arab in the arab world today feels everyone of those things. everyone of these regimes is dead man walking. i don't know when or how. >> to get more domestic, you said that the decade beginning
on september 11, 2011, was the worst decade in american history. my first reaction was, where were you during the 1860's? lincoln was doing all land grant policies, trying to build the transcontinental railroad, all during the war. >> we argued about for great problems. the next chapter is called ignoring our history. does what he said, walter. i would argue, we are not supposed to say this, so do not let it out of this room. we actually have an industrial policy in this country, a formula for success.
as much as some of you might think that you did this all by yourself, whatever will you build, whatever business you start, not in it off, okay? you built this as a result of the greatest public-private partnership in the history of the world. this public-private partnership is best seen in lincoln's time, but we argue it goes all the way back to hamilton. it is built on five pillars. one is education. we educate our people of to and beyond the level of technology. second is immigration. we attract the world's first round intellectual draft choices and we bring into this country and make them citizens. third, we bill the best infrastructure in the world. for our rules for risk-taking and capital formation. we have rules to govern market
and we have rules to exempt people. the last is government funded research. those are the five pillars of our success. as walter said, look what lincoln did in the middle of the civil war. he passes the homestead act. he creates the transcontinental railroad. you see them repeated in every great president of to the last decade. education, infrastructure -- the american engineering society rates are infrastructure as c- plus. i don't have to tell you what is happening, we are educating the world's best talent and sending them home. how did you like that subprime crisis?
government funded research is falling off the chart. if you take all five of the things that got us here, they are all going off the rails. >> why? >> it goes back to the politics, sustainable to situational. it gets back to not talking about the world that we are in. there is one of to a congressman who were defeated in the last election in a republican primary. a republican ran against him because this conservative, south carolina congressman was not conservative enough. >> do we have another microphone? >>bob english was the object of
probably the greatest political " of the 2010 midterm election. a man stood up and said "keep your felt the government hands off my medicare -- "keep your filthy government hands off my medicare." no one wants to connected to the world that we are in. we need to do three things. we need to cut, we need to raise taxes, we need revenue, because we also need to reinvest and reinvigorate our formula for success. i am all for cutting, but if you do not do it in the framework of a plant that is built on the arteries of your success, you
are going to make the problem so much worse, it will imperil the american dream. that is what is going on. we are driving without a bumper and the spare tire. we used them just to get out of the subprime crisis. we have to have a really, the smart as possible debate and connected with our history and how we got here. >> are you disappointed that obama has not let further on this? >> i am disappointed with everybody. i voted for barack obama. i am not supposed to say that, so strike that for the record. if i voted for obama, the reason i would have voted for him is because i thought he would change the polls, not read the polls. i thought he had their unique ability to change the polls. i see the republicans behaving
with a recklessness. we have two chapters in the book and throughout the decade -- the first decade of the 21st century, we have been at war. we said deficits don't matter and climate change is a hoax. you can believe what everyone about climate change, but it is not a hoax. when someone praises mitt romney pour his courage in saying that climate change -- it is not a hoax. what courage for him to say the apple actually dropped from the tree to newton's head. what a brave man, he gets my vote. do you realize how far you are from reality?
that is a problem, and that is why the conclusion of our book is called "shock therapy." >> at some point, if they go off the cliff on the debt ceiling and everything else, why don't we -- why isn't there some other alternative? >> we think there is, walter. if we do the debt the way we should be doing it, that is like going to the dentist and getting a raw and tooth pulled with novocain by the dentist. if we don't do that, i were to is coming out, but are dennis will recall the market and mother nature. that is like having a caveman remove your to with stone
rejigger move your tooth with stone tools. there will be blood all over the cave floor and he will probably knocked out a few other t the rounded. that is what we are in danger of. that is what we told the soviet union they needed at the end of the cold war. we are the ones that need shock therapy now. we need a third party. if michael bloomberg wants to run, i am happy to vote for him. we need a shock to the system. i have no illusions right now that a third party can win, although i think the country is in a radical mood. i think the country is in a much more -- in line >> are we talking about a few months from now?
january, february 2012, assuming things went bad with the debt ceiling, assuming the administration did not get unemployment down, and assuming the republicans nominate someone from the middle of the country -- do you think in 2012 of light blue bar or somebody could run? >> i do, and i hope they do. there was a wonderful column about this. how many mornings do you turn on meet the press and there is a republican and democrat debating, each one giving their party line. wouldn't you just love it there was someone in the middle? someone to say these two people are talking complete nonsense. this one actually thinks we can get out of this whole without raising taxes, and this one thinks we can do it without cutting entitlements. what nonsense.
that would be pay-per-view for me. i would love that. that is what is totally missing. i do not think a third party can win, for a lot of reasons, but if it is led by a bloomberg, it will have more impact on the .ext president' ross perot at one point had 40% of the polls, and he was nuts. he thought little black helicopters were chasing him. imagine that michael bloomberg runs. he does not need a dime from anyone. he attaches a on to his plan a carbon tax to raise money for
government research. he will get more than ross perot's 18.9% of the vote, and i think it would really shake up the system. this system needs shaking up. we are trapped in a corrupt duopoly and basically -- one thing about the internet and the hyper connected world. it has gladdened every hierarchy in the world from the new york times to the banking industry. it has gladdened every hierarchy in the world except the two- party system, and that will not remain. that is a prediction that i will make. i think this is going to be radical election unless barack obama becomes the third party candidate. >> that texas back to lincoln -- that takes us back to lincoln. you had a movement that eventually changes things.
let me open it up. >> i think we only have one microphone. right here, and then who is over here looking for mike? my question is, if it is dead man walking in the middle east, there is a country called saudi arabia which you have written a lot about. i realize -- what this country does not realize is what happens if it falls. >> the king is somewhere -- the crown prince is extremely ill. the acting crown prince is also in his 80's an extremely
conservative. they claim they have a plan for ,uccession, but let's remember 50% of the arab world is under the age of 25, and that applies to saudi arabia. what they have done is, all these countries that have survived have all made huge payoffs to the people. the saudis gave everybody a huge amount of money. this can become real budgetary problems along the way. the palestinian prime minister said it would be a lot cheaper just to let the people vote. i don't know how it unfolds. i hope egypt unfolds in a positive way.
i think we are at the top of the first inning still with this whole thing. it has a long time to play out. >> you mentioned the obama factor in one of your columns before. i was just wondering if you could elaborate on how the young arabs will be. >> friends in the arab world resisted this because they thought it took away from the people who actually went out in the street. i was trying to think about -- whenever you have of movement as big as something like the arab spring that goes across 300 million people, and has multiple inputs. i did a column just speculating, what are some of the inputs that you did not see on the streets. this was just speculation, but one of them was that when obama
spoke in cairo right after his election, i speculated that there was someone in the audience, a young egyptian who looked up and said, his middle name is hussein, my middle name is hussein. who knows what see that planted? who knows what seed is planted? during ramadan, people exchange candles as a tradition. they are basically lanterns. i did a column that you do look all across egypt, they have lanterns with a microchip that play egyptian folk songs and they light up. if you turn them over, it says
made in china. so you have china making the iconic ramadan gift in one of the lowest wage countries in the world. that is another -- those are the kind of things that nourish this rebellion that are not obvious, but were behind the scenes. >> what to do think about the peace process with the palestinians? >> next question out there. the people who need arabs bring most right now or israelis and palestinians. i will do a panel on this tomorrow, but i really feel that egypt is going to be the hosni mubarak of the peace process. the time to make big decisions in life is when you have all the
leverage on your side. that is when you make big decisions. your more intelligence. hosni mubarak had 30 years of leverage on his side to reform egypt, and what did he do? he actually joked people more and more every day, and then he tried to do in six days what he should have done over 16 years. that asymmetry in power today between israel and the surrounding arab states and the palestinians has never been greater. it has so much leverage on its side. we have an israeli prime minister who has this armed coast rica. the palestinians have made every mistake in the book, because
they were just the flip side of that. you had an israeli prime minister who was offering them up peace initiative, and they played games around that. they had a nine month freeze and in the ninth month, the palestinians showed up. i think this is on a tragic track. you have zero meaningful leadership on both sides and they are heading for a train wreck at the un. i hope we get out of the way. >> we should not be coded? >> i am thinking about that. i am not sure that they do not need some real shock therapy. >> i was thrilled to hear that simpson-bowles are your ticket.
>> stand up, alan, just for a second. [applause] absolutely. >> let everyone watching on the internet note the applause. >> help me out. you advocated tax increases, and i thought simpson-bowles had a different approach. >> i will let allen answered that question. >> i am happy to see the of the floor to my friend at the center. >> i have just left the witness protection program. if i had no new dirty -- what we said, we were stunned.
we found one trillion $100 billion in tax expenditures, which were simply tax spending or tax earmarks. it was untouchable, no oversight, and a little home mortgage interest deduction, oil and gas depletion allowance, bluecross blueshield, parking for employees -- no income tax on savings of insurance. so we said ok, get rid of them all. take $100 billion and reduce the deficit, take the other trillion and give them a pretax rates, 0 to $70,000, 8%, $70,000 to $210,000, 14%, everything over $270,000, 23%, and lower
corporate tax to 26 from 36 and go to a territorial support system on distribution of the corporate revenue. there is, and you can do it. [applause] >> there seems to be a phenomenon going on that many people in this room and elsewhere in the nine states have given up on the government so people are doing things in business to make social change. what do you think it takes? does it take just a candidate that people can rally behind? how do individuals participate in this process to make a meaningful change? >> if you do not have a solution at the scale of the problem, you have a hobby.
i would not try to change the climate as a hobby. you really need collective action. ultimately, until you can translate into numbers that can actually reverse the supreme court decision on citizens united, you really cannot affect the system. it has to start somewhere, and that leads into the penultimate chapter of this book which is called "the just did not get the word." there are two schools in the country. those that are exceptional -- the president does not put the right emphasis on the first syllable, so we are going to crucify him.
americanhink exceptional isn't is an entitlement of social security, that we just did to keep saying we are exceptional. we are optimists, but we are frustrated optimists. i am a huge optimist about america. the reason i am an optimist is that this country is still full of people who just did not get the word. they did not get the memo that we are down and out, that we are in a decline, so they go out and invent stuff and create stuff, and is what truly saves us. one of my favorite quotes in journalism, a soldier said they were just too dumb to quit.
this country is full of people that are too dumb to quit. if we don't enable and empower those people, we will never get this american dream back to where it needs to be. one thing on education if we can get to that. >> the gentleman in yellow. >> i am from new york. just a question on the arab spring. with 27% unemployment, or whatever the number is, and no basic industry or structure or anything else, and the only organized party being the islamists, don't you see some real danger is there? >> the answer is absolutely yes.
the way i think about the era of spring is like this. -- the era of spring is like this. my friend bob schieffer gave me my best lesson in journalism. i do not always practice it, but it is the best lesson i ever got. it is all the stories i missed were because i was talking when i should have been listening. it is a great journalism lesson. i did practice that when i was in cairo. every day i walk to tahrir square and i said you know what? you are seeing elephants lie. you are seeing something you never thought you would see before. nobody predicted it, and yet it is unfolding before your eyes. shut up, take notes, and keep listing. i can give you a million reasons why this will fail.
you highlighted some very accurate ones. i was in singapore looking at the singapore school system when this started. then i went to dock post -- davos, and everything erupted in egypt. my wife called and said they are playing your song. she said i had permission not to come home, so i went out there. i will tell you, it is the most remarkable story i ever covered, because it is such a human story. what it tells you is that human beings are capable of surprising in so many ways. but here is what worries me. when you go from singapore, where the government on any given day and ask it sell, how do we better teach fractions to
third graders? you realize in egypt, that never crossed hosni mubarak's mind in 30 years, you realize how much ground that have to catch up. >> you began your top with some -- you began your talk with people sank they got used to it about the escalators. it seems like too much of the american public is getting used to it. >> my experience in the last year is how many people are so anxious for someone -- people will be used to it if they think they have no choice, but if they start to proceed there is another choice, i think that can fled in a second.
>> another question about k-12 education. >> i will just make the point, because so much of the book is devoted to education. i will talk to you a little bit about the point we are trying to make, which is that what is happening in this hybrid connected world now is, as i said, what labor economists you are more valuable than ever if you have still, and did you do not, there is virtually nothing for you anymore. the days in which the steel mill could come to your town and absorb all the people in the middle are really gone.
we have four chapters on this. if we want to pass on the american dream to our kids, it is going to take homework times two. all the damages we had coming out of world war two or over. we have to live the bottom to the average, and that is a huge problem. we have to lift the average so much higher. our kids are being educated for $12 an hour jobs, not $40 an hour jobs. i am not an educator. what we did was interview employers, and said what kind of employees are you looking for?
then we work backwards from that to what kind of education you therefore need. we interviewed four types of employers, 1-, white collar, the head of a washington law firm, the guy who ran in an outsourcing firm, a blue-collar, chairman of dupont, and the head of the biggest green collar employer in america, major- general martin dempsey, now promoted to chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. i will just leave you with this thought. what all four of them said, it was striking how much they had in common, and what they all said was that we need workers who can do critical thinking and problem solving to get an
interview. that gets to the last chapter, which is called "average is over." whatever you do, you better find your extra. the more the world gets hyper connected has just moved up. my mother-in-law was chairman of the board at a liberal arts college in the middle of iowa. last year, one out of 10 applications there were to china. of those 250 applications, one- half had 800 on the math portion. what you find out from employers, and this was the most interesting thing -- head of the washington law firm, i said to
him, what has happened to your of law firm with the subprime crisis? who gets laid off first? >> he said it is not who you think. it is not last in, first out. those are the ones who are going. the once who are staying can say you know, jeff, we can do this work in a new way. there is a new set of work we can do. so his section in the book starts with him explaining my law firm just hired a chief innovation officer. so basically what is happening now is people don't want just critical thinking and problem-solving. they want people who can invent, reinvent any job they are doing. that is going to be the new
thing, i think in the labor market, and that has to feedback into education. when we got out of college, we got to find a job. i think our kids are going to have to invent a job. >> now, your wife is a teacher. your daughter was in teach for america and remained a teacher, stayed on. it takes new types of teachers if we are going to reform the education system, or how would you reform the education system? >> the homework times two chapter is it. the way it begins is we would never give hillary clinton clear advice. but had she come to us and said the president wants me to be secretary of state. we would say no, ms. clinton,
you need to be secretary of education. >> that is eastern duncan. >> arne duncan has the top national security job in the country. we have had the pleasure to hear so much about technology and new ideas. what we say in the book is that we really don't know what is sufficient, more charters or less charters, bigger or smaller classrooms, more or less technology. we leave that so the amazing experts you have assembled here. there something we feel we polite know and that is what is necessary. that is collective action. we always want better educated, better enabled teachers. we are all for that. knock it off with the teachers. we need better parents who prepare their kids to go to school and understand the priority of education. we need students who are coming to school to learn, not to
text. we need politicians who want to raise the educational standards every year because we know what world we are living in. we need neighborhoods who invest in their schools because if they don't invest in that, they may be investing in prisons down the road. this is a collective task. it takes a village. you give me better parents, better politicians, better teachers and students. the teachers will be awesome. >> the gentleman over there. >> you have developed a lot of energy around k-12 in looking at your strategy. have you looked at birth to age 5 where 80% of the brain development curse and for much less money. if you can increase the percentage of kids that arrive at kindergarten at grade level reading, the expense you put into your four chapters would
be brought down to 20%. >> you are absolutely right, and certainly not anything we are against. that is pretty well documented out there. we are focused on another area, but thank you for raising that. >> the gentleman in the blue shirt back there? >> hello, i am dave, and i am chairman of g-100. we recently put a conference on. a statement was made that 80% of the young american work force is unqualified for the armed forces because of academics, criminal record, drugs or obesity. we haven't verified this yet, but if this is true, how do we reclaim these people who are out of the educational system already? >> that statistic is 75%, not 80%, so we are really heading
in the right direction. [laughter] it is from a private study that was done, so i can't verify it personally. but arnie did quote that statistic in a speech. it was one of the things that shocked him that 75 mrs of the applicants to the u.s. army can't get in, and that is because they couldn't do simple math basically. as simple as 2 plus x equals 4. we actually have a segment in the book out of that study which is called 2 plus x equals 4. it is a problem, but it is part of a broader educational deficit we have right now. and as the world gets more and more hyperconnected, what basically that means is that is why average is over.
everyone has to justify their value. i as an employer now have access, every day a little more, to more above-average talent anywhere in the world, or above average software, or above average robotics. so if you could find your extra to justify that, you're going to have a real problem. so that is to me where the discussion should be starting right now. that is going to be at the core of national security. it affects, as you said, the army. it is going to affect our ability to produce. you see, we filled that gap. we got through the terrible twos, the first decade. we filled that gap with credit. we created a whole bunch of jobs in construction, retail and leash -- leisure to soak up the people who weren't developing a skill. now we have taken the steroids
away, and that 9% is going to be there for a while. >> arnie is going to be speaking late this afternoon. he also spoke late this morning in the green. >> thank you very much for your comments. given the importance of what you have to say, the fabulous cogency with which you say it, the belief you have and the evidence backing it that everything has flattened, i think the room would agree that the timing of your analysis and comments about our society should be brought to the public's attention faster rather than slower, i am curious why you didn't self-publish and get this out right away? >> i don't even know -- i know what self-publishing is. it will be out in eight weeks. there is a real virtue of going through the editing process,
with careful deliberation. for an eight-week delay, it is worth of for me. it will be out there soon enough, but i appreciate the sentiment. thank you. >> on that point, because of this new media landscape, at one extreme you have tweeting where you can get something out real fast instantly. at the other, we still have the notion of the book, the idea that i am going to spend a lot of time and think about it. you began this week by saying you would never use twitter and never use facebook, as one of our discussions on the stage. >> yes. >> and then i saw you over at meadows with the founders of twitter, and they were sort of poking back at you. do you see your mix of media entertainment? do you see yourself mixing
media or will books always be the form you use? >> that is a good question. it's all about kind of how you work basically. first of all, i like to get all of my news tartar. i don't want it filtered. i want to be there. it is all about time management. my wife is the smartest person i know. she also has never been on twitter, and she just got a facebook paper. he is always riding books and the paper, usually for me. she says did you see this thing that i missed? i can't concentrate when people are pinging me all the time or saying did you see what was wrong? if i stopped for that, every
time someone writes something prays worthy or challenging, you can't focus as much. i just put as much of the technology as i can out of my hands and survive, i am overwhelm. this morning i red the daily star, "washington post," the wall street jurge and others. you have to know when to go out and report yourself and not get distracted. people say to me it is really easy for you to say that average is over. you have a column in the "new york times." you don't understand. i inherited james reston's office. what an honor. a great editor and columnist in the 1960's and 1970's. i suspect i wouldn't be insulting him if i said he woke
up and said i wonder what any seven competitors are going to write today. i wake up every day and say i wonder what my 70 million competitors are going to write today? if i can't offer something better out of the bleg blogger out of iraq or israeli, adding value, i am running walter as fast as i have ever run. to do that, you want to take in as much as you can. but if you are overwhelmed by it -- i am not involved in internet wars. if you say something nasty about you, i won't fire back because i am just too busy trying to figure it out. i see a lot of people in my mind wasting a lot of time and energy that these technologies can take you down and into
blind alleys. that is why i do what i do. >> we look forward to the book, a great form of media communication. >> thank you. thanks very much. [applause] >> bravo. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] >> next, a discussion on the foreign policies of president richard nixon, then another chance to see arthur thomas freedman on the american dream. tomorrow and "washington journal" we discuss democratic and fiscal issues could affect the 2012 elections. bruce cook discussion his proposal to cut federal spending. and we continue our look at
u.s. trade deals. vicki talks about the united states-colombia trade agreement that was signed. "washington journal," live at 7:00 a.m. eastern on c-span? >> who is really going to get fired, nancy pelosi on one hand or john boener on the other. they are proxies for the narrow range of choice we actually have in elected officials. >> in the decoration of independents, the ath your takes on problems and possible libertarian solutions on c-span's "q & a." >> the richard nixon foundation recently hosted a discussion on president nixon's foreign policy. speaker included staff members and the president's son-in law.
it runs 1:45. >> good morning, ladies and gentlemen. i am ted walker, thethe navy memorial, and i want to welcome you to this richard nixon legacy forum, specifically addressing the cold war strategy and his effect upon it. it is my pleasure to have you here with us today. this navy memorial has been here for now 22 years. we are in existence to honor the service of people who have served in all the sea services, navy, marine corps and the merchant marines. president nixon was in the navy. he served in the second world
war. he served in a job close to my heart. he was a freight cargo forwarder. he was probably most famous for helping the troops out because somehow or other, he got a channel to get hold of fresh hamburger meat once or twice a month. he had nick's hamburger stand on one of the steamy islands in the south pacific. like so many, he labored under extremely difficult conditions, unsung, but absolutely critical to our winning the war. it is my pleasure to host this and to have this forum here on pennsylvania avenue on america's main street. with that, i would like to turn you over to the coordinator of the richard nixon legacy program, mr. jeff shepherd. [applause]
>> this is the first one on foreign affairs. i spent five years on president nixon's staff doing domestic affairs. i feel comfortable in that area, but we decided we ought to recognize he was a foreign affairs expert, too. we pleased to do that, starting with richard nixon as a cold war strategist. if you would study the cold war, an excellent way to start the study is the public life of richard nixon as a congressman, senator, vice president, years as a private citizen, as president, and then years as an elder statesman. the cold war was an everyday focus. for america, we were
extraordinarily fortunate to have such a well-prepared, thoroughly experienced individual involved in that area. we know that because of the records. one of the interesting things that we are able to have welcome us today is the archivist of the united states, who was the keeper of those records. david ferrero is a super archivist. he was library at duke, and at m.i.t., and then he was head of the new york public libraries because he became the national archivist. i like this story because at one point in the recent past i had a meeting with him, and i snuck in five or six books -- because i know he is a lover of books -- that represented a different point of view on some aspect of the nixon presidency. i put the books on a table, we had our meeting, and he got the
point without the books. but then it occurred to me it was going to be a whole lot easier having gotten the books into the national archives than to get the books back out. fortunately david sent an assistant down so that i was able to take books out of the national archives. i think i have been one of the very few people who was able to do that. with that, let me introduce david ferrero, archivist of the united states. [applause] of >> thank you, jeff. it is a special treat to be here in this building as a navy vet. it is very nice to have my office right across the street. i wander over here as often as i can. so it is very appropriate that we are meeting here. it is a great pleasure to join you this morning for the latest in the distinguished series of nixon legacy forums c.e.o. sponsored by the nixon foundation and the national archives. the archives assumed responsibility for the president libraries in 1941 when we accepted the rose volt
library from r.d.r.'s family and foundation. in 2010, the nixon foundationed us. a couple of months ago in february, we moved more than 42 million pages of nixon presidential records from our facility in college park, maryland, to the major new facility we built at the nixon library in california. now the entire nixon story from his early years to two decades of post presidential contributions are in one place and under one roof. the nixon library arguably holds the fullest record of any presidential administration in history. we know that many major works of scholarship will now begin to emerge from that rich trophy carefully assembled. they illuminate our 37th president's domestic and
foreign policies. they convey a real sense of what it was like to be there. now it is my pleasure to introduce the moderator for the forum, edward f. cox. he has served three presidents and four governors in his home state of new york. he has been active in education, and the environment. he was the 3th president's son-in-law, married tricia nixon in the rose garden in 1971. turgeon the post presidential years, he accompanied mr. nixon many foreign trips, including some to china, the far east, the soviet union and russian. ladies and gentlemen, ed cox. [applause]
>> those values were the basis of everything that he did. to do that i am going to read from senator dole's eulogy in 1994 for president nixon. senator dole said i believe that the second half of the 20th century will be known as the age of nixon. why was he the most durable figure of our time? because he always embodied the deepest feelings of the people led. one of his biographies said that richard nixon was one of us. for those among you who are wondering who that was, that was tom wicker, no great nixon fan. but he said richard nixon was
one of us, and so he was, said senator dole. to tens of millions of countrymen, richard nixon was an american hero who shared their beliefs in working hard, worshiping god, loving their families and saluting the flag. he called them the silent majority. like him, they valued accomplishment more than ideology. they wanted the government to do the decent thing, but not to bankrupt the nation. they wanted its protection in a dangerous world, but they also wanted creative statesmanship in achieving a genuine piece with honor. it is true that no one knew the world better than richard nixon. as a result, the man who was born in the house his father built would go on to become this century's greatest architect of peace. richard nixon, who i knew i want mately for 30 years -- intimately for 30 years, was a
genuinely great men. some men are great because they do well in the positions they hold. richard nixon was just a great man, period. that is because of some of the basic attributes that he had. of those attributes, i would say the most important was his tremendous intellect. an intellect that thought strategically. his daughter, tricia, said if there is any one characteristic about him that was most important, it was that he thought strategically. i wouldn't call him an intellectual. if i did, lightning would probably strike me because an intellectual on his or her own was not what richard nixon was about. he was about putting actions together with thought. and anyone who has worked with him, as these men have, they
understood how he put thought together with action. let me read to you from his writings in which he talked about the spracks between -- interaction between intellectual thought and action. he said reading is also indispensable to providing perspective. when you tackle a specific problem, you will think broadly, not narrowly, deeply and not superficially. most of the great leaders i have met, and he names them, were prolific readers. each of these men was a far-sighted strategic thinker not because he inherited that trait, but as a result of his habits of reading and contemplation. he concludes this chapter on thinking in one of his post presidential books by saying there is no greater exhilaration than the sense of
accomplishment you feel after making a decision based on careful, intense thought. in the end, thinking provides the inner peace and serenity necessary for decisive and effective action. a man of thought and a man of action, that was richard nixon. among his other attributes that served him well was his acute sense of shifting political forces both domestically, which made him the politician that he was, and also internationally, which made him into the great architect of peace that he was. and in his post presidential years after he finished his memoirs, he came back to new york, and he wrote a big -- book during the 1980 campaign, a book that an advisor to then
candidate reagan made sure was placed on the table next to reagan when pictures were taken of him for the cover of "time" magazine. this was the reagan campaign saying that richard nixon's thinking in foreign affairs is our thinking. the book was entitled "the real war." this was a time when the sofertse were on the move. we were still recovering from vietnam. you had the neocons growing, the committee on present danger . in this context president nixon wrote -- and this is the essence of what he was saying about foreign policy at the time -- the united states represents hope, freedom, security and peace. the soviet union stands for fear, tyranny, aggression and war. if we are determined to win, if we resolve to accept no substitute for victory, then victory becomes possible.
then the spirit gives edge to the sword, and the sword preserves the spirit, and freedom will prevail. those are stirring, fighting words, words attempting to bring back the fighting spirit as reagan was trying to go in the 1980 campaign and fronting the soviet union as the country was on the move across the country. i was privileged to travel with president nixon to eastern europe. we went to check slovakia, hungary, bull compare ya. they didn't let him go into poland. they were afraid. he was so popular there, it could have caused a serious riot that could have toppled the regime. on that trip he had some very intense discussions with people like president kadar of
hungary. he absorbed what was going on, not only just eastern europe, but others that were reacting closely to what was going on in the soviet union. he came back and wrote a small book, small volume. 5,000 copies, zrishted to thought leaders and political leaders around the country, because he knew it was time for a change. here is what he said this. is richard nixon reacting to realities on the stage and trying to change the approach of the country, of the administration. he said the cost of soviet conquests are a massive drain on its desperately weak economy . the british may have been enriched their empire, but the soviets are beam impoverished by theirs. the assets are military power. great as they are, his assets are ill suited to solving his
problems. he has to look for ways to deal with his problems, or at least to mitigate them. that fact brings the prospect for real peace great. putting it simply, both sides want peace, the united states because we believe in peace, the sofertse because they need -- the soviets because they need it. the time is ripe for a deal. this was hard-headed did he taunt as he called it. 1983, time to make a deal, time here for negotiate. i think we have here some soundbites that have never been heard before, richard nixon in 1983 talking about detante. >> well, i recall talking to manuel, the secretary-general of nato, a great italian diplomat, who served six years
in moscow before he came to the united states. he told me before i became president, saying i know the russians. they are liars. they are great actors. they are cheaters. they lie and they act because they consider it is their duty to do so. he says you cannot trust them. now having said that, however, he did not go on to say that you should not deal with them. my answer to this whole proposal or question as to whether or not the russians can be trusted is very simply only if we make agreements which are in their interests to keep. and only if everything we do with them positively is linked to something else which will cost them if they break the agreement. but you can't trust them on the basis that we are sincere and they are sincere. that is totally irrelevant to
them. their goal is very different from ours. to simplify it, our goal is peace and an end to itself. their goal is victory. whether it is peace or war, it is a means to an end, the soviet domination of the world. under marxist-lennonnist teaches, you use any means necessary to achieve the goal. if it requires you to lie and cheat, you lie and cheat. we simply do not follow that particular "morality." but in dealing with that, we don't have to lie and cheat, but we must be aware of the fact that they will when they can get awith it. on the other hand, you can deal with them, and they will keep a deal if you make it on a basis will serve their interests and ours. i do not think that morality is relevant as far as they are concerned. they are thinking in terms of
the total communist world, a communist society for everything, equality and everything else that communist in its ideal state is supposed to produce. they believe, therefore, that anything they do to achieve that is therefore justifiable. i recall, for example, a conversation with regard to the whole idea of whether or not they were sincere that i had with ambassador bolen, our former ambassador to russia, and a great russian expert. he was concerned -- this was in the early 1960's, after he had become ambassador to police, that some washington people in the government were convinced that crews chef was sincere in his desire for peace. he said that is so stupid. that is so wrong. he said he is a communist. he can no more be sincere than this table. there was a coffee table
between us, can be sincere. he will therefore be whatever is necessary to achieve his end. sincerity has nothing to do with it. while i recall talking to -- >> you see here a man who understands that you need to do a deal, to negotiate, but you've got to negotiate from strength and knowing who you are negotiating with. but it is time to negotiate because of those early years of the reagan presidency, the united states has come back in its military strength and fighting spirit. the soviets had delivered because of economic problems, and the time was right to do a deal. this was his sense of the shifting political forces and what we ought to do with them. you saw a second point i want to raise, his ability to communicate in clear simple
phrases. those of our panel who watched him work on his speeches, he would work them over and over again on his yellow pad, not just the words, but the thoughts, honing them down so that every word had meaning. the audience understood that and were complemented by it. that is what made him such a key speaker. another point i would like to raise, a basic attribute he had throughout his career. he rejected political correctness, the veneer people would have, and as was put forward, he would try and get to the essence of what the situation was or the person was. he saw through hiss and stood with chambers.
hiss was a member of the elite and was very well put together. he said no, chambers is right, and hiss is wrong. he was right about that. you can talk at the end of his career about gorbichev and nelson. everyone was impressed with gorbichev, but he went with yeltsen. one wanted to improve communism , yetd -- yeldzen. i had an experience down in cuba in 19787. i ended up in a four-hour conversation with fidel castro. it was simultaneous translation
from midnight to 4:00 a.m. in the middle of it, castro blurted out, how did nixon know i was a communist? 1959, castro comes into power, comes to washington, and he meeds with the vice president. the vice president and he had a conversation, and the vice president then produced a memorandum to the president saying this man is a communist, we have to do something about him. of course castro was parading then as a great democrat, and the media and others were saying we had turned castro into a communist by our approach to him. castro was saying to me that he was a communist, he was trying to deceive people about that, and vice president nixon saw through that, and it bothered him. he wanted to know how he did that. that was the ability of mr. nixon to see through to the
essence of what a person was, or a situation. finally, i would like to emphasize the courage that he had of his convictions. some people have great insights, but aren't willing to go out there on the political stage and fight. whether it was hiss, or the memo with respect to castro, or whether in his final years, talking about yeltzen and pushing with the burks -- bush administration in the public and private years. it came through in everything he did. briefly i would like to say a few things about him personally and the settings in which he worked. since he liked to think, ideas were more important to him than things. he lived simply. small simple bedroom and study. his favorite room in the white house was the lincoln sitting room.
he had his hide away office next to the oval office. his e.o.b. hide away. he often entertained in his post presidential years in new york city in our apartment with tricia with heads of states and governments who had come to visit him there. never went on a board. never accepted an honor romero. he gave up his secret service because they were an impediment to him moving around freely, and he didn't feel the government should pay for it. while living, he wrote books, but he wrote books like the one i showed you, real peace. he didn't make any money off them. he wanted to get his message across. he made speeches for the impanth, not for the money -- for the impact, not for the money involved. his biggest impact was his trip
to china. of course i had my interests back in the 1960's, that were very singular. one word, tricia. that was it. but in the process i interacted with mr. nixon as he was campaigning for the presidency. i happened to be in the library of his apartment on 5th avenue in february of 1968. the discussion then in the newspapers were nixon's secret plan for peace, what was it? he never talked about that. that was rockefeller pushing nixon to say something, to expose what his plan was. rockefeller didn't think nixon had a plan. i happened to be in the library waiting for tricia to change. we were going on. he came in after a hard day of campaigning, listening to tchaikovsky. should i ask or not.
mr. nixon, what is your plan? i'm going to go to peeng, to moscow. that is how we are going to bring about peace in vietnam and in the world. wow. i didn't tell anyone. just kept it to myself. he had already thought out what he was going to do. he had built up the "political capital" that had served his policy so way. there were many areas to be discussed here, the yom kippu return war that led to camp david, the draft that led to the volunteer army and the way we fight now in many ways, the india-pakistan war, which still defiance in many ways what is going on in the subcontinent now. even at the end of his career, end of his life, in 1994, he was still in the game. he was still thinking strategically. to him, the cold war -- the
effects of the cold war still were not over. he was concerned about russia. his basic thesis was communism is dead in russia, but democracy has not yet won. for that reason he was traveling back and forth to russia, worried about the leaders in russia, speaking on the topic. he gets a call from president palin ton. they had a conversation about clinton's russia policy. you can see in the squept months clinton russian policy change along the advice that was given by richard nixon. that is, as i see it, the essence of the man. i would like to conclude by going back to senator dole's
eulogy. he talks about the last time he saw president nixon at a luncheon held in the capital honoring the 25th anniversary of his first inaugural. without a note, president nixon stood and delivered a compelling speech, captures the global scene and sharing his vision for the future. once over, he was surrounded by republicans and democrats alike, wanting one more word of council and insighing into world affairs. may all judgment come to a close. that is what this forum is about. the distinguished folks here who served in president nixon's administration will address president nixon and the cold
war. let me introduce them. our first speaker will be richard allen. mr. allen headed the foreign affairs issue team during president nixon's 1968 campaign. he served as a senior member of president nixon's nobs security council. he serveds as assistant to security affairs in the reagan administration. he is a senior fellow at the hoover administration and has a washington-based consulting services firm. our next speaker is going to be richard solomon. ambassador solomon is president of the united states institute of peace. he served on the staff of the national security council from 1971-1976. that position as an aid to henry kissinger, he served the president's efforts for peaceful relations with china.
he served at a variety of posts, department of state, assistant secretary of state for asian and pacific affairs and ambassador to the philippines. our third speaker will be john lehman. he is chairman of a private equity investment firm. he served as secretary of the navy during the reagan administration, as a staff member to henry kissinger on the national security, as a delegate to the force reduction negotiations in vienna, and future director of the u.s. arms control and development agency. richard allen, you're up. >> thank you very much, ed and distinguished colleagues. mr. ferrero, nice to see you here, and mr. shepard. frank gannon is somewhere in
the back. i did a mental calculation, and the audience is fronted today with about 210 years of solid, hands-on nixon experience. i also see our colleague, bud c.e.o.e here today, -- bud crowe here, adding manny more years. ed cox had the opportunity to see it from the inside, having the opportunity to travel with the president, especially after his presidency, getting to know him well. my personal acquaints, and i think it is important to make these kinds of confessions, was having the opportunity to pass out nixon-eisenhower pamphlets in working class south bend indiana, while i was imprisoned in a catholic university there
known as the university of notre dame. when i was all of 20 years old when i got to meet mr. nixon when he came to the campus. i was enormously impressed. in 1957 i met him again when i was in washington because i crashed a cocktail party at the capital hilton when i was working there that summer. i saw a lady i couldn't identify, and the man next to her turned around and stuck out his hand. it was the vice president of the united states. i said i have met you last year at notre dame. i remember, he said. i remember. i began sending him my articles when i began to write. i went abroad to the university of munich in germany to do my post graduate work for three years. i came back, began communicating with mr. nixon.
he eventually moved to new york , and on a number of occasions i had the opportunity to visit him in new york, always wondering whether this man, who had the singular vision about the way the world ought to be organized would in fact decide to run for president again after having the experience of 1960 and then the set-back in 1962, having lost the governorship to pat brown in california, and making a decoration that some people thought meant that he would never again surface as a public figure. in 1966 he visited 47 congressional districts. and lo and behold, 47 republican congressmen were elected, 46 men and one woman. his thinking was moving more and more toward running for president again.
by 1968 i was asked to take a leave of absence from the hoover institution on war and peace at stanford, university, and come east to join a very young crowd. pat buchanan nan, 28 years old, raymond price, 30 years old. i was a little over 30 years old, 31 years old. bill sapphire, who wasn't but a few years older than we were. alan greenspan, and a very interesting cast of characters, young, and a very small campaign staff, began to build. martin anderson, my colleague, my domestic counterpart, richard whalen, a great speech writer and thinker. this group of individuals put together, if you will, at mr. nixon's behest comprehensive
programs. what ed said is very important. it is also important when you study president reagan, to whom i was quite close for a number of years prior to the presidency and then during the presidency. you have to understand that the man read and understood. and when ed said that president nixon read. he did read deeply, and he communed deeply with those who had specialized knowledge. he also wrote, and he wrote on tablets like that. that is exactly the way he wrote his note here. the asian speech from long island, his first inaugural address. all of these study habits, and these deep reading habits, and deep discussion and thinking habits are brought to bear in a way that we can't attribute to a lot of presidents that we have known, at least during my life time.
that is not to say that the presidents weren't good, excellent or sometimes even great in their own right. but those that were the most serious and the most studious that i can recall in my own mind during this period of my lifetime, which spans from 1936-forward, thinkers and doers, based on deep thought were two, richard nixon and ronald reagan. mr. nixon's formation came about very naturally in a way. in 1946 he was drafted to run for kong -- congress and was elected. in 1948 he began the investigation of alge research hiss, who evoked the sympathies, if you will, of the establishment press, but as ed remarked, in the long run,
richard nixon was right, and hiss was wrong. mr. chambers, i met him once, he was right, and hiss was wrong. history has proven that hiss was a soviet spy. he betrayed our secrets. forged in that, and the kind of reaction that came from it, he then moved on to a race against helen douglas in 1950. that also evoked the great antipathy. you can see if you look back historically now, an eants nixon press -- an anti-nixon press forming. those in this group believed it was time to demonstrate a new
nixon. it was very much a part of the new schtick as people would say these day. he even went on "las vegas in," and his line was sock it to me. >> a new impression was created. a hard-fought campaign with nelson rockefeller, and henry kissinger on the other side, who didn't even know richard nixon then. then on a small change on the platform, nixon sales out in -- sails out in front. the only set of notes, page,
after page, after page, of the first cabinet meeting the day after the cabinet was announced a the theater in the round approach, all of them present. president nixon forgot the name of his best friend for years, morey stanz. that was humorous. we had a day-long meeting, and my notes go on and on. he charged his cabinet with getting the right people in government. it was a stupendous lesson on how to staff a government. take the people that you trust. and those that you don't know, those in the bureaucracy, try to convince them of the worth of your program. but also take the people that you trust. that lesson was not always earned, and as a consequence,
we had some anomalies shall i say in administrations. mr. nixon's world view was well developed. i think he did think in terms of winning the cold war, without question winning the corled -- the cold war. that policy came off track during a brief team in the 1970's, when taking a simple term used in diplomacy used to describe relaxation of tenses between nations, detaunt. taking that term and elevating it into a form of theology, if you will, led to all sorts of offshoots of thinking in the government about the nephew
tabblets of the process. one even wrote a book entitled convergence, which described how we would drift steadily left-ward, and the soviet union would drift steadily ride-ward. there was a lot of vulgar theory going on, and while i don't think mr. nixon shared it, what became the theory of detante eventually became rip it is in the republican party as elsewhere as well. it held as a theory that if you could cokes -- coax the soviet union into becoming dependent on training, aid and technology, you could control their behavior by the threat of denial of that very same
technology and trade to which it had become accustomed. it didn't work. it simply didn't work. and that caused, i believe, a bit of a set-back. in the later years after mr. nixon left office, i had the opportunity to visit him in california and have long discussions with him, and i think that he saw, too, that this was -- this had been elevated to a level that didn't make sense. but he did think constantly about people, and he was concerned about his country in a profound way. i want to mention the opening to china. cox heard it in february of 1968. i heard it not long before that when i visited him in the law offices in new york city. i had helped -- i had made some inputs on an article for
foreign affairs magazine in 1967. it was entitleded, "asia after vietnam." and in that article, which was ignored by and large by the press, was a key praff or a key set of sentences that indicated what our end really had in mind. he wasn't prepared to talk about what that plan was in any elaborate detail lest it -- lest the conversation get off track. what he wanted to do was plant the seed. i was scheduled -- i was not yet full-time in the campaign. i was at hoover, and my job there was the editor of the yearbook on international communist affairs. as such, i had 16 or 17 people on the staff, and i had to go abroad to talk to people who were working for us in various places in asia. i was on the way to korea, to japan and to hong kong, and mr.
nixon said i would like to give you letters for the president of korea, and to the prime minister of japan, but i don't think the prime minister of japan will see you. however, his brother, who was once prime minister as well, is a very good friend and was prime minister when i was vice president. so i went off with letters to the former premier in japan and to president park chun hee in korea. i was authorized by president nixon to drop that notion, and another notion, that the possible return of okinawa would be considered were richard nixon elected. these two gifts, if you will, advance notice of what may happen in china, although i cooperate -- couldn't be
explicit, were very, very welcome in japan. by the time i got to korea, i couldn't deliver the letter because four days earlier, the north korean guerrillas add attacked, and the last of them were shot dead at the blue house. so i couldn't effectively deliver the letter. as it was, mr. nixon had a broad vision for asia after vietnam, which meant that he saw a conclusion to vietnam, which he wasn't permitted to than conclude as promptly as he would like, peace with honor. but he saw something very profound. he opened the door to china, no question about it. no one else could have done it. but i do think that were he alive today, richard nixon would be having some very
serious second thoughts about where that relationship has led and some of the overhanging dangers inherent in it. >> thank you>> thank you. my colleagues have touched on a number of key points i had wanted to make. i will put them in a framework. as we look at richard nixon's contributions to our national security and our strategic positioning, it is clear that the opening to china and the subsequent arms control negotiations with the soviet union, the china opening fracture the dynamic of the cold war. it restructured our dealings with the two major communist powers. there is a long history to that kind of maneuvering. the nixon initiative really
stands out. you can go back to george washington's time. he was our first president even before the revolution trying to maneuver his would-be country between the french and the british. the russians were there, the spanish were there. if you look at the history of that early period, you see the country trying to deal with threats and opportunities with countries abroad. the china opening clearly stands out as one of the great strategic initiatives in the 20th century. we can look at it some interesting perspectives that will reinforce what my colleagues have said. richard nixon, without question, came to the presidency as the best prepared candid it to deal
with the world of the 20th- century. as we look back on his experiences as president ion , he had dealtower to with similar structural turns in the 1950's. president eisenhower dispatched nixon to asia in 1953. eisenhower was in dealing with an unpopular war in korea. he was dealing with a soviet alliance between the chinese and the russians. one of his problems was to reassure a range of allied countries that we would stand by them, we would contribute to their security. vice-president nixon dealt with the world.
15 years later, he confronts again. this time the challenge is not the korean war but the vietnam war. this time of the soviet relationship is showing signs of political strain. again we have asian allied countries concerned if the united states will support their security. in 1967, mr. nixon, considering a run for the presidency, has to say it himself, if i win, the last thing i want to deal with is the burden of the vietnam war. it was destroyed the presidency of lyndon johnson. he knew it would be a great burden to hubert humphrey.
the brilliance of his consideration of the world at that time was that he could see there might be a possibility of splitting the communist world and creating circumstances where he could leapfrog out of the vietnam quagmire and reposition united states as the most maneuverable and secure element in a strategic triangle. what is interesting about the 1967 article, asia after vietnam, is its title. he was thinking beyond the quagmire. how do i get out of vietnam into a new environment? the other thing that is interesting is that as we read the article today, there is somebody who is not mentioned.
there is a dog dead is not barking. there is almost no mention of the soviet union. what ever thinking was going on, it was not communicated and anything but the most elliptical fashion where mr. nixon had talked about the need to engage china so that it would not persist in its posture of angry isolation. the 1967 article really did not gain much attention. what is fascinating about the subsequent history is the thing that came world mr. chinn was a ping-pong ball. -- that gained world attention was a ping-pong ball. henry kissinger said he wanted
to try to engage the chinese. he started sending messages to the beijing through the romanians and the pakistanis. initially those messages did not elicit much of a response. in the summer, the soviet feud erupted into a serious military clash along the border. that signaled that the differences between the major communist countries had reached a point where something serious could be done. surely thereafter, mr. nixon began to see positive responses out of china. in october, the chairman brought
them for the national day celebration. signaling he was prepared to talk to an american. then to everybody's shocked, as chairman mao later said to henry kissinger or maybe the president himself, he said all we did was to throw out a ping-pong ball. the world like crazy. suddenly, in the united states, the great fear and that we would be drawn into a war with china over vietnam, the reprising of the fear we had had in the korean war with china, suddenly that ping-pong diplomacy gave people a sense that maybe the game would significantly change. three months later, henry kissinger, at the invitation of
the chinese, made a secret trip to beijing in early july. he laid the basis of for president nixon's formal presidential trip to china in february 1972. that initiated this dynamic that changed the context as a political and strategic maneuvering of the cold war. let me comment to little bit. how did that initiative play out with perspective of more than 30 years? the chinese have benefited by the relaxation and the
normalization of relations with the united states that was completed during the carter administration. the transition away from the revolutionary time to a leader who set in motion the phenomenal economic growth of the china and the rise of the most populous country in the world, which today, at the beginning of the second decade of the 21st century, is reshaping the world economy and we will have to see what its impact is more broadly in strategic terms. one of the things that president nixon was concerned about in his opening to the chinese was not dispiriting our allies. above all taiwan.
in discussions with president nixon and henry kissinger, it was thought that -- jiang would be so dispirited that they would throw in the towel. there would be an accommodation of some sort. china would be reunified on the basis that mao had percy, taiwan coming under communist control. today, 2011, taiwan is still there. it has prospered. its economy has taken off. one of the great challenges for the next decade is whether the tie 1 mainland relationship has
a are -- is detoxified of its civil war element. it can lead to an accommodation and a situation where the united states does what it can to secure the island. the other fascinating elements resulting out of the nixon initiative of 1971 -- one of the tremendous ironies of those initiatives is that today, it was one of our most enthusiastic friends of asia. the nom. ietnam. where the relationship will go
remains in insisting question. finally there is career. we think back to president eisenhower concerned about ending the korean war. one of the interesting stories about the kissinger trip to beijing in the summer of 1971 was that the same time kissinger was in beijing, the north korean communist leader was also in beijing. there were kept apart. surely after the secret trip, within a few hours, he went back to north korea to try to reassure that the opening of the united states was not going to harm north korean interests. he went to vietnam shortly
thereafter to tried reassure the vietnamese leaders that china would not compromise their security. but the smaller communist countries were unnerved. as were our allies about how that would happen. contrast the situation with north korea. north korea has never been able to break out of the hammer lock of the kim family dynasty. its economy has never taken off. the elite hangs on by its nuclear program and its artillery while south korea has become one of the great economic and political success stories. north korea, a collapsed economy and a society that is impoverished now has to be non
china for the security and for its economic well-being. the knicks initiative set off some dramatic trends that continue to play out and have enhanced american security. >> thank you very much. >> there are many things left out that are relevant here. dick was one of the three founders for whom this theater is named. while he was there he wrote a book called "a peaceful
coexistence." i read that when i was an undergraduate and was a very much struck by it. i made a pilgrimage to the c.s.s. part of georgetown university which is in a tiny town house in georgetown. i met dick for the first time. that led to a long relationship that and doors to the present day. it was dick allen who brought me into the white house on his staff. that has influenced my thinking ever cents. what i wanted to talk about was
deported and a military context for what the world looks like when richard nixon took office. the balance was so is tilted against the united states the people tend to forget the environment in which he has to work. he had a three front war. he was the first president elected since the mid-19th century with both houses of congress in the hands of the other party. it was bitterly divided at the time. not just the vietnam war, but the cold war itself. the rise of revisionist historians that interpreted
history as the cold war being our fault, it was just reacting to our constant building of the military provocation. that was part and parcel with a defeatism that have grown in nato. at the time, people were skeptical of the idea that -- of the sino-soviet rest. they say they massive chinese military reinforcement of an already massive warsaw pact, standing army of a hundred 80 divisions that were poised to sweep across western europe. everyone knew that their argument was weather would take
one week or three weeks for the warsaw pact to reach the channel. nobody argued. there was not a serious argument anywhere that that was all it would take 4 it to sweep across europe. then it would go nuclear. the western brigid western europeans knew that the so- called flexible response was a trigger to all out nuclear war. when nuclear-weapons are used. the third front was a vietnam and southeast asia. the president had a daunting strategic picture when he came in.
it was easy to criticize his initiatives to start negotiations on strategic arms limitations and ballistic missile defense. the fact is there was no strategic programs going on in the united states of the time when president nixon -- nixon took office. the russians had five systems being deployed. they had to do strategic bombers. they had ss 11, new solid fuel rockets and ballistic missiles. thereat the full deployment of
their 1700 ship navy. while the united states was a rapidly shrinking, it was declining at about 10% a year while the soviet fleet was growing. more than 100 nuclear submarines. we had no building program. it is my belief that his allowing of the view of american policy to gain the attraction it did, to lead to negotiations, and the ballistic missile treaty, was because he had
discussed with myself. he did not have many alternatives. it was in his view a way to keep things, kind of saying, nice doggie why he looks for a stick. the congressional front, we think we have a better divided body in washington today. this was a sunday school picnic compared to the bitterness of those years. it was not republican democrat buying -- any means. the congress was different then. both parties were split between fox and doves. the jackson democratic party was very strong.
it was more anti detente than the republicans were. the republicans were somewhat liberal at the time. they had split the republicans. it was a complicated situation. i think that with the perspective of history, it was an astute way to do with the issue. in order to get the abm treaty, it was necessary to use -- and the president did effectively -- to force the liberal democrats and the liberal republicans to
support an entirely new thing called the trident. the tomahawk cruise missiles, a new missile, the beginning of the spending for that deployment. the criticism against those treaties was that it legitimized a two-one advantage to in the strategic delivery systems. it put a stop in effect into the expansion of the advantage united states had in the technology of ballistic missile defense. the soviets did not have the capability to deploy. we had a two active sites at the time the treaty was negotiated. in retrospect, this was what
enabled the funding and the acceleration of the strategic programs which year to four had been totally blocked on the hill. in retrospect, it was, a way to use some political jujitsu to address the balance that he fell out had been allowed to decline. with regard to the opening of china, there have been several books written about the navy's role in gathering intelligence during those years. suffice it to say that some of these books have alleged we were
tapping cables and reading -- what they weren't thinking and ordering and their deployment. there is no doubt in my mind that the opening to china, which was ably handled after the thunderclap of the trip, had a huge impact on the soviet thinking. it's ugly transformed their perspective from being arrogant , one of the soviet planners told me that they ran extensive war games every year.
they did analysis of all the nato exercises. and all of our exercises. they said they never had an exercise where they were not able to get to the channel in a week. suddenly, they had to face a to front strategic element. he was the united states dealing with china. china was becoming more aggressive in dealing with the soviet union because they had this new opening. the chinese saw how much that would change the strategic picture in the pacific. i believe the cold war ended in no small measure because of the
impact, however astutely or bad the it was played. this balance between the opening to china. >> you have opened an interesting line of inquiry. as if the opening of china was not as much about the soviet union as a was about china. president nixon said there were two major mistakes he saw he had made. one of which was [unintelligible] price controls. >> the gold strategist. >> we are foreign policy guys. >> the second was said he did more intense bombing earlier in
1969 rather than when he did it after the trip to china and before the soviet union. you forget the trip to the soviet union was the first by an american president. he did it against the backdrop of a very strong military attack on north vietnam that he later regretted earlier. if he had done it earlier, would it have been possible with respect to going to china? with respect to the soviet union, would he have been able to do it without having some violent response from them? they were unnerved by that. the fact that the trip was pulled off after that, it was seen -- you can imagine how the
north vietnamese felt about that. >> there was an earlier incident within the first 80 days. the north koreans shot down an a propeller's, driven aircraft. >> that is a nice term for a spy plane. >> we got that hit order. i said to john, we cannot find kennedy posole crisis speech. little did i know he was having two speeches written.
we had to have a quick response time. we submitted a draft of the speech and then watched a press conference. rn announced he was not striking. we had called for targets in north korea. there were not any. everything was under rocks and in mountainsides. harbors were built. there was nothing exposed except the civilian population. a strike would have meant nothing. there was no point in doing that. what was the ultimate reason? president nixon thought that by not reacting militarily, the early provocation, where they shot down the 121, sent a signal to the chinese that we intended to pursue a reasonable course
there would not result in the force. the soviets but came as a result of the cuban missile crisis. that is where it broke into the open. the chinese condemned the soviets for backing down. saying there were not revolutionaries after all. they have lost their revolutionary fervor. it was china's going to carry on with the revolutionary warfare. the national liberation movement. >> let me give you an alternative view of the sign of the soviet. it was khrushchevs a stack -- attack on stalin. the man he had relied on for is some political credibility in china had been taken down. khrushchev was undermining mao's
authority. that is not to say the cuban missile crisis -- >> it was the scab. >> since we are in the navy memorial with distinguished naval persons, let me take the naval view. could we have taken action earlier? in my own view is that we could have. we could have a mind the entire coast without bringing china in. as we embark on a kind of christmas bombing, were taken a lot more of the protective sides, i think that would have brought the chinese reinforcement.
they would have greatly increase their support. i want to hear both the dixit response but the hostility between the chinese callbacks millennia. the chinese were not that comfortable in supporting vietnam. certainly they supported them in solidarity with their communist brothers. their national dislike of the vietnamese made a more complex issue. i think we could have brought a better and earlier end to the war had we mined and enforced a mining operation. >> what i find interesting about this exchange is the way
president nixon combined the use of military strength and diplomacy. diplomacy that -- military was so is a servant of diplomacy. he felt that his opening to the chinese would so demoralize the vietnamese and change the dynamic of the paris negotiations about ending the vietnam war. there he had to have been disappointed in the degree to which the vietnamese toughed it out. you remember the relation deteriorated to the point where he tried to teach the vietnamese a less than -- a lesson that when ping came to washington on
his conclusion of the normalization process, he told the president used to tease the vietnamese a lesson. -- teach the vietnamese a lesson. they did not come out well. the level of hostility has been there. it has been there for centuries. it is still there. the balance in the region today. for president nixon, the military was always a component with the diplomatic deal being the zero ultimate objective. >> i would like to make one point that has not been made. although it has been mentioned. there is a corpus of 10 books that richard nixon has written. it was not just six crises after
having lost the governorship in california and writing about six major crises of his life. i think i have all of them. i think i have all of them signed by r.n. a great treasure. if you take that as books together, what i do remember is that you have a complete world view that is complete. not by the closed thought, but you can contest the evolution of mr. nixon's thinking in reaction to real events. he recognized the opening of the foreign affairs to explain to the -- people did not pay
attention. >> excuse me for interrupting. some people were paying attention. >> the literati like you were paying attention. >> one of the things -- richard nixon read history and thought about it deeply. at this first meeting, what does he say? i have read your six crises. it is not a bad luck. when i joined the national security council staff, i just finished a 600 page but analyzing channing's politics. the chinese went and translated that looked. -- book. >> did you get your royalties? [laughter] >> unfortunately no royalties.
the chinese did not want to understand the thinking of their counterparts. >> there is another critical point. the american press did not want to understand richard nixon's positions. i want to relate a humorous incidents that took place in the summer of 1968. martin anderson and his wife and i were talking with mr. nixon. i believe alan greenspan was there. it was at his home. and r.n. himself. we're talking the press treatment of his discussion with many issues. he said, dammit, the press is
not paying attention to what i am saying or the issues. i have spoken on every issue there is. martin and i caught said, yes, sir. but i have been keeping issues for two years of his statements. i had a pat buchanan sending me the speeches. i was cutting them up. this is before computers and xerox machines. i would put it in cards on a shoebox. that was the story within the story. this is when i was at the hoover institution. we had people would assemble live equipment. one of the side tasks was to use people who collected the statements. i would categorize them. i have this continuing shoebox full of cards.
one day i gave it to a young lady and said you're doing this work? she said yes. we had all fixed up and down. i walked out and thought, where have i seen her before? i went home that day and on the cover of "time," there was a story of interracial marriage. one of them was the dean's doctor. -- daughter. she was organizing my nixon issue cards. i went back and said, excuse me, you are who i think you are. she said yes, mr. allen. but i need this job. my husband and i need this money. i would never say anything to my father. i went away almost in tears.
i thought, the fat is in the fire. i later told the secretary that story. he was got smacked by at -- gobsmacked by it. allen and anderson, you get your rear ends on an airplane get to new york. i want to there in four days. we put together a 160 page book of nixon on the issues. have them printed. i designed them. i had one copy leather bound untitled, "nixon socks it to one 'em." it was given to mr. nixon. he said that is great. give it to the press. martin anderson went back in the
plane and handed it out to the press. never again did the question of the nixon on the issues ever come up. >> year is a good point about mr. nixon and the buildup to the 1960 election. there was some time worry said, you will not see me for the next nine months. i'm going to be traveling. to which you have to do but i'm going to south america. i'm going to asia. he did that with one person accompanying him. he built up a dossier on the issues. this opens up other areas. the cold war was not just about china and vietnam. was about the middle east. what was going on there was a war. he was prepared to deal with what came up in the aum to pour
am kippur war. that led the way. it opened the relationship between egypt and the united states, between the military would somebody like to comment on the middle east? what mr. nixon did? >> just one quick vignette. since we're in the navy memorial, the way that president nixon -- it was hanging in the balance of 1973. for the first time, they had given the egyptians and syrians had held heat sinking -- seeking
missiles. they needed replacements. not one of our allies in nato would allow landing rights. fighters cannot make it across the mid-atlantic. richard nixon had spent time in world war ii on carriers. he was aware of their capabilities. he said to buy up some carriers. the navy had four carriers strategically placed. the phantoms hopscotch and got to israel before they lost their air force. >> he knew they were on their way. he could go on offensive began. then there is the other half. when the israelis had trapped the egyptian army. at that point he said no.
stop. that led to the relationship between egypt and the united states. >> i think that is exactly right. it was a great strategic insight that propelled him to make the decisions that he made at the time. there's a lot of hesitation. but he saw the shape of what could come out of if the players on the chessboard were treated accordingly. it is even more remarkable that right now there is reason to worry about a reversal of all the in terms of an egyptian- israeli relationship and what will come out of the middle east today. i wish we had r.n. around so we
could get some thinking and guidance. it is sorely needed. >> back to those cards. >> i cannot resist telling an anecdote. telling the story of one of the first trips i took with dick early in the administration. we went to libya. >> we were the last white house officials to visit libya before the takeover. >> i said -- i sat next to the defense minister. this is before gaddafi took over. he told the defense minister that we were impressed by how your navy pilots flew against egyptians. i said they were not navy
pilots. they were israelis. he said, yes, but we have lived with the jews for 1000 years. they cannot fly airplanes. [laughter] >> was that when they served me land? -- lamb? another thing that john did to me on that trip was to arrange for me to fly in the back seat of an f-four. he wrote in another airplane. we have fond memories of that. shortly thereafter, gaddafi took over. the big issue was, my god, they're going to raise the price of oil from $5 a barrel. >> you did referred to lining up aircraft carriers to get them there.
there was resistance in the defense department and the state department. they were trying to think what to do. yet thought this out and a bass. he said we're going to do this. let's get it done. the consequences of that stretched out for many years. >> what else was he going to do? >> let me add, since we're coming out with all of these baseball stories, his long and enduring concern with the chinese. that relates to his reaction to the shoot up of the students. he privately made it clear to president bush 41 that the relationship with china could not be destroyed by the public
reaction to the shooting of the student. that led to the secret trip in the summer of 1989 to try to sustain the relationship tier rate. were the domestic basis of political support had been eroded and undermined by -- in 1990, i was negotiating a settlement to the cambodian conflict. the issue of trying to do with our pow mia, we were having negotiations through the united nations security council in new york and paris. this was after tenement's
square. dealing on china was still a no- no. we were going through the u.n. president nixon was carrying out this mission. he invited me to dinner at this house. he grilled me on what our objectives were in negotiating with the chinese. what are we going to do with vietnam? he was worried that we were going to somehow go too easy on the vietnamese and somehow compromise our dealings with the chinese. thewhatever it's worth, a door -- discussion reassured him. if you look at the outcome of the cambodian settlement and the
road map to normalizing the anon, if there was any beneficiary to the negotiation , it was the chinese. with the british out, china is just over the border. >> one of the jobs of a national security advisers to brief former presidents from time to time. i once went up to new york in 1981 and brought a leading soviet specialist and a china specialist. on the way in, mr. nixon give me a call and the car. he said, are those people with you? tell them to go shopping for a while before we have dinner. i want to talk to you. [laughter]
i sat down with him along. he said i wanted to tell me what is going on inside. i want to know all of the details. his long arm was still very much in the present of the day. he knew exactly what was going on. he kept the tentrils in various parts of the government. he could talk to dick solomon. he could talk to me. he could talk to anybody he wanted to. people could answer his phone calls. that night we had dinner in new york city. he displayed all of the mastery
that he had had for a long time and never lost. never lost until the very end. >> let me add one other story. you have my juices flowing. about how important china was to this man. after i served on the national security staff, i went to the iran convert rigid corp. for a decade. early 1977. i'm sitting in my office. my secretary says president nixon is on the line. when i worked for henry kissinger, the president never called directly to staff like us. president nixon had just recovered from phlebitis. he was in that darks situation after his resignation.
he greeted me about what was going on in china. i do not think he wanted to call henry kissinger to find that out. he hung up at the end of the half-hour and said, that son of a gun. he is going to rebuild -- rehabilitate himself by going to china. sure enough, a few months later, it was announced the chinese had invited him to comeback. it began this political rehabilitation as an international figure. >> that is an important point. i went out to see him afterward. we walked the beach a little bit. he talked of a program, a get well program. those were not his words.
it was shortly after he and gone to california. he had planned even then to implement -- he was going to travel. it was an amazing thing to watch. a plan that he set out once more. he has had plans of his life. strategic plans. the get well plan was extremely well thought through. and masterfully executed. 10 books. my thought is that, coming up on our centennial, it might be a good idea to put together the 10 in a set. so the pair in a boxed set. >> they are extraordinary books. they reverberate through the day. he was one of the first to write about the country stretching
from morocco to indonesia. and their importance for the future. this is long before other people had focused. you can go it from book to book. i remember as we win by the washington monument, what you say to the president until noon? i said mr. president, 10 years, you will be back. 10 years later, on the cover of the "newsweek." after she heard him make a presentation. he was back. >> i have snuck up behind you. that is a perfect note to conclude. we could go on all afternoon. we expect more forms, more talks about the 37th president.
>> betty ford is being remembered today. she died last night at the age of 93. president obama and former presidents have been remembering her for her courage and her work on helping reduce the social stigma of drug and alcohol addiction. she became a founding inspiration behind the betty ford center. george w. bush remembered her contributions to the country and jimmy carter and his wife said she was a remarkable spouse. in 1976, she delivered her husband's concession speech after he lost his speech to president carter. next, remarks from 1999 when she and president ford won the congressional gold medal. she was honored for her work on behalf of those addicted to alcohol and drugs. here's a portion of that ceremony.
>> thank you. mr. president, all of your wonderful people who are here. good afternoon. i cannot tell you, i feel as though my chest is busting with all the fantastic things. i thought i was going to sprout wings and fly out of the top of the rotunda. it is so special to be here to see my husband honored on this occasion. it has been so full of gratitude and to share in the recognition is beyond anything i could have possibly ever imagined. mr. speaker, as you know, yours is the only job that jerry ever wanted. [laughter] [laughter]